The next time you consider voicing opposition to the illegal bombardment of Pakistan with drone delivered U.S. missiles, consider this - the drones are effective. So effective, in fact, that they can kill terrorists who have already previously been killed.
Once again this week we have been reliably informed by U.S. officials via the ever present SITE intelligence group via the terrorists themselves, that a drone delivered missile has successfullytaken out Al Qaeda's number three man:
The operational leader of Al Qaeda in Afghanistan was killed in an American missile strike in Pakistan’s tribal areas in the last two weeks, according to a statement from the terrorist group issued late Monday that American officials believe is correct.
The militant leader, Mustafa Abu al-Yazid, an Egyptian, was a top financial chief for Al Qaeda as well as one of the group’s founders, and was considered by American intelligence officials as terrorist organization’s No. 3 leader behind Osama bin Laden and his deputy, Ayman al-Zawahri, another Egyptian.
al-Yazid a.k.a. Saeed al-Masri is thought to be a long time associate of Osama Bin Laden and Ayman al-Zawahiri. The 9/11 Commission pinpointed him as a possible direct financier of the attacks. He also most notably was alleged to have claimed responsibility for the assassination of former Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto in 2007.
The timing of al-Yazid/al-Masri's reported demise is remarkable as it comes at exactly the same time as a major UN report thatsays the drone strikes are illegaland should be stopped immediately.
Even more remarkable, however, is the fact that al-Yazid/al-Masri was reported dead almost two years ago. This from the London Guardian in August 2008:
A leading al-Qaida military commander, reputed to be number three in the terror group, has been killed following several days of fierce fighting in Pakistan's North West Frontier province. Abu Saeed al-Masri, identified in local media reports as Mustafa Abu al-Yazid, al-Qaida's commander in Afghanistan, died during a battle in the Bajaur tribal area.
"This time it sounds like intelligence officials have higher confidence that he's actually been killed,"says Matthew Waxman, a law professor at Columbia University and a former Pentagon and National Security Council official.
Regular readers will be familiar with our previous articles on the magic merry-go-round of al Qaeda terrorists who keep rising from the dead and escaping multiple captures.
The "al Qaeda number three" is a particularly magic position because pretty much every terrorist that the mythical group is affiliated with seems to have held the distinction.
Way back in 2005, Timothy Noah ofSlate magazine identified four different number threes,then there were six, that number shortly increased to nine. Those reported to be al qaeda's number three man include: Abu Faraj al-Libbi, Abu Hamza Rabia, Abu Laith al-Libi, Abu Saeed al-Masri, Abu Yahya al-Libi, Saif al-Adel, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, Mohammed Sheikh Mohammed, Abu Zubaida.
The jokes come thick and fast - "The No. 4 spot, however, is always a man on his way up in the world.", "It's like being drummer in Spinal Tap." etc etc.
The number three saga is yet another example of how a manufactured smoke and mirrors propaganda veils reality. The "war on terror" mantra continues to be propagated as justification to wage permanent occupation and control over the middle east by the global elite.